fbpx
WW2 veteran has stolen medals replaced after being mugged at Rochdale cenotaph, The Manc

WW2 veteran has stolen medals replaced after being mugged at Rochdale cenotaph

Jim Marland received replacements of his original medals during a surprise presentation at Rochdale football club.

A WW2 veteran whose medals were ripped from his chest by a mugger while paying his respects at his local cenotaph has had them replaced.

ADVERTISEMENT

96-year-old Jim Marland – a former Private, who served with the Durham Light Infantry Brigade – was at Rochdale Cenotaph prior to Remembrance Day when he was sadly pushed to the ground and robbed of his war medals and other personal belongings.

It was a couple of days before the shaken former soldier felt able to tell his family about the shocking incident – but, after a serving soldier came across the heartbreaking tale on social media, Mr Marland has now received replacements of his original medals during a surprise presentation at Rochdale football club.

Mr Marland received the replacement medals on the pitch at half-time of Rochdale A.F.C’s League Two match with Stevenage.

ADVERTISEMENT

The veteran also received a guard of honour, while the crowd applauded his entrance.

The stolen medals included the 1939/45 War Star for active service during the Second World War, the France/Germany Star, the Defence Medal earned for service in the UK which was under attack, and the 1939/45 War Medal, also known as the Victory Medal.

They were replaced by Major Phil Linehan – a Reservist with 103 Battalion Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers (REME), who also owns a medal mounting company.

ADVERTISEMENT
WW2 veteran has stolen medals replaced after being mugged at Rochdale cenotaph, The Manc
The veteran also received a guard of honour, while the crowd applauded his entrance / Credit: British Army / Ministry of Defence

Major Linehan explained: “I’m a military historian and a couple of weeks ago, while on a battlefield study in Sicily, I was on Facebook and spotted a re-post from a friend Steve Shires, who I served with in Northern Ireland, saying a veteran had been pushed over and had his medals stolen.

“I immediately said I would replace them from my stock.”

Major Linehan travelled five and a half hours from Kent to make the presentation, and even got to chat with Jim prior to the presenting the replica medals.

Speaking after the surprise presentation of the medals, Jim Marland said: “It was a surprise and I want to thank everyone that’s been so nice to me,” and even jokingly added: “If I’d known I was coming to this, I’d have out another row of medals on.”

ADVERTISEMENT

As well as the medals, 103 REME also provided a replacement beret with an original WW2 cap badge worn by a relative of ex-Corporal Buckley (Royal Engineers) and an original WW1 cap badge worn by a Great Uncle of Flight Lieutenant Martin, who served with Major Linehan.

“The big Army family got together to produce this award and it was a wonderful privilege to give back to someone who gave so much for all of us,” Major Linehan added.

Featured Image – British Army / Ministry of Defence

Total
30
Shares
Related Posts